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Learning Series: Training Pearls

One of your United States Strongman, Inc. State Representatives from Minnesota is Pete Berg. Pete is a masters lifter and offers a great article with some quality training advice!

When I first got into weight training I was fortunate that my high school had a weight lifting team and a coach who could teach the Olympic lifts. In the late 70’s it was hard to get information on lifting so you bought books and magazines and read them from cover to cover to get any good training info or you traveled to a gym because they were very few around and hooked up with someone who looked like they knew what they were doing. Today you can’t turn on a computer without finding someone without a shirt on and giving advice.

With the easy of the internet come problems. Most information is just regurgitated stuff that somebody heard someone else say. This kind of information comes with issues. Remember the game of telephone when you were a kid. You say a phase and by the time it’s past to the last person it is something totally different. Same thing happens with the self-proclaimed guru of strength. Things get lost along the way and you wonder why your training doesn’t work.

The biggest invention that has helped the most in modern day lifting is the video camera. Why? Because you can see what you are doing as well as others to help coach you to be better. I can’t think of a pro sport that doesn’t use video on every single play then goes over it and fixes the mistakes and builds on the positives, but tell somebody to film there lift so you can see what is going wrong and fix the weakness and it usually turns people away. Best way to fix a weakness is to face it head on and not hide from it.

When I build a program I focus on big compound movements, the big three for me are squat, press and deadlift. Then go from there, but film them find the weakness and put in lifts the correct the weakness. This of course will make your training change as your weaknesses change building a solid base strength. When you around other strength athletes ask questions and when you get an answer don’t be afraid to ask why they do this or that. Knowledge is a powerful thing, even after 30 plus years of training I ask a lot of questions and try to learn the why.

I rarely train with max weights, I save that for meets and when my training calls for it. Instead I like to work with percentage based programs and when I train reps I train perfect reps, just because it is light I don’t take it easy. In my mind I do the rep like it is a max effort and work that perfect rep. The body builds muscle memory and under stress the body goes to what it remembers, and if you’re training reps are done halfhearted and sloppy. Under stress that will come out on the platform. So train hard, record your lifts and practice perfect reps.



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